2012 Italian earthquake

A couple of weeks ago,  on May 20th 2012, a 6.1  Richter earthquake  woke up at 4.03  a.m.  Ferrara and whole Emilia, with the result of 6 casualties, historical buildings in ruin, and several cracks in houses and industrial buildings. It’s very shocking to see  on tv all this desperation and ruins, especially because we have friends living in that area, and we know it should be very difficult for them in these days.

People were hardly  trying to come back to ordinary life, when after a long sequence of aftershocks, a new deadly shock occurred on May 29th  at 9.01 am, killing 17 people and crushing the buildings already weakened by the previous shocks.

The zone was  included in the national seismic map only in 2003, but in 1570 another  earthquake obliged the Estense family to flee the city and stay away  6 months.  When they came back they called the most valiant scholars to inquire about the earthquake’s causes, and one of them, Pirro Ligorio,  the architect in charge of St.Peter’s factory,   highlighted the use of bad materials and inappropriate techniques in building houses. He is in fact considered the father of building safety and anti seismic approach.

engraving: 1570 Ferrara earthquake

Coming back to the recent earthquake, it can be interesting to study it a little from the astrological point of view, and especially according Ptolemy (and his followers) approach, which we have already mentioned and explained in detail in a post about Abruzzo’s earthquake (( The Italian earthquake )) . This is the very same approach William Lilly uses in his Annus Tenebrosus (( William Lilly. Annus Tenebrosus, or The Dark Year· Or Astrologicall Iudgements Upon Two Lunar Eclipses, and One Admirable Eclips of the Sun, All Visible in England, 1652. Together with a Short Method How to Judge the Effects of Eclipses. A True Type of the Suns Great Eclipse. By William Lilly, Student in Astrologie. London: printed for the Company of Stationers, and H. Blunden at the Castle in Corn-hill, 1652. ))

As usually we will start from the last visible eclipse in this area, which was the one of January, 4th 2011. The chart is cast for the moment of maximum obscuration.

eclipse area
eclipse area and data

Eclipse chart
Eclipse chart

As we know from the reading of Quadripartite II,6  the effects of an eclipse are not immediate but depend on the position of the sizygy in the chart. Since it is quite near the ascendant its effects will start in the first 4 months. Now we should consider its length, almost 3 hours ( from 7.54 to 10.39 a.m.) so the effects will be prominent in the first 1/3 its duration, considering 1 hour as 1 year.

Roughly calculated – in Italy we would say it is a ” maid’s count” 🙂  4 months + 12 months from January 2011, we arrive April/May 2012.

The ruler of the eclipse is a predominant Saturn which has rights both on the eclipse and the Ascendant degree, the other malefic, Mars is receiving both the application from Sun and Moon. At the Descendant  Pollux is setting, while Pleiades are anticulminating at IC. Both of them are violent stars listed in some Greek manuscripts (Par.gr. 2424 fo. 75v, Angelicus 29 fo. 172v, Laurentianus 28, fo. 34).  (( see Marco Fumagalli, Il terremoto del Sichuan orientale ))

Without trying any ex post facto reading ( my idea is that with this method we need a chart, ie a place to cast a chart), the Descendant with the Mars star echoes Italy and Emilia, which is under Leo too, according Gerolamo Cardano   (( Girolamo Cardano, Aforismi Astrologici Cura Giuseppe Bezza. Xenia, 1998. ))

Now let us see the event chart, for the second earthquake.

For the first one with a different epicenter, we did not show the chart, just we will say it occurred with a Sun eclipse not visible from Italy.

biwheel eclipse/earthquake
biwheel eclipse/earthquake

In the chart of the event Mars and Moon are in  partile conjunction in Virgo, where Mars is stationing since months. According Ptolemy stationing planets produce intensifications in the events, ( and we have seen the effects of this Mars in Greece’s affairs, considering this country is under the influence of Virgo). They are partile aspecting the eclipse sizygy, activating it, according Ptolemy words ” After this introductory examination it would be the next task to deal briefly with the procedure of the predictions, and first with those concerned with general conditions of countries or cities. The method of the inquiry will be as follows:  The first and most potent cause of such events lies in the conjunctions of the sun and moon at eclipse and the movements of the stars at the time.”

Please notice that again according Ptolemy of the terrestrial constellations (like Leo) the northern tend to signify sudden earthquakes.

Mars and Moon together in Leo constellation
Mars and Moon together in Leo constellation


Written by Margherita Fiorello, CIDA certified member, for heaven astrolabe blog @ year 2012. If you want to be notified the next time I write something, subscribe to my RSS feed.


Marco Fumagalli, Il terremoto del Sichuan orientale Phos, n.17, year 2008

Katia Mazzoni and Mauro Martinelli. Appunti Sulle Eclissi, Vicende Storiche e Vicende Individuali. Ilmiolibro.it, 2012.

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